Residential Tenancies Act Takes Effect January 31, 2007

Archived Release

Residential Tenancies Act Takes Effect January 31, 2007

Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing

Balanced Protection For Tenants And Landlords Contact Info QUEEN'S PARK, Oct. 20 - Legislation that will provide balanced protection to tenants and landlords while keeping our rental housing market strong takes effect January 31, 2007, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing John Gerretsen said today. "The Residential Tenancies Act implements a fair rental housing system that benefits good tenants and good landlords," said Gerretsen. "We are building stronger communities that offer a range of housing choices to meet the diverse needs of Ontarians." Once proclaimed, the Residential Tenancies Act, 2006 will eliminate the current unfair eviction process, ensure fairer rent increases for tenants, help landlords protect their investment and encourage a healthy investment climate. To reflect a new mandate of enhanced customer service and accessibility, the Ontario Rental Housing Tribunal becomes the Landlord and Tenant Board. Information about the act, the Landlord and Tenant Board and service fee reductions will be available at all Service Ontario outlets, Ontario Rental Housing Tribunal Offices, Publications Ontario and online at www.mah.gov.on.ca by clicking on Residential Tenancies. "We are ushering in a new era of tenant and landlord relations characterized by fairness and accessibility," added Gerretsen. "The Residential Tenancies Act will provide tenants and landlords the protection they need to ensure that Ontario's rental housing system works for everyone." Disponible en français For more information visit www.mah.gov.on.ca Backgrounder ------------------------------------------------------------------------- RESIDENTIAL TENANCIES ACT, 2006 The McGuinty government is providing balanced protection for tenants and landlords while keeping Ontario's rental housing market healthy by setting January 31, 2007 as the proclamation date for the Residential Tenancies Act, 2006. The Residential Tenancies Act, 2006 The Residential Tenancies Act received Royal Assent on June 22. Beginning January 31 2007, the act will: - Eliminate the unfair eviction process, so that every tenant will have an opportunity to go to a hearing or mediation - Base the annual rent increase guideline on a real cost indicator - the Consumer Price Index for Ontario - Require rent reductions for sitting tenants when utility costs go down, if a unit's rent had been increased to reflect high utility prices - Require rent reductions for sitting tenants when a capital expenditure such as a new roof has been paid for, if a tenant's rent had been increased to pay for those costs - Permit the Landlord and Tenant Board to disallow all rent increases if a landlord has failed to maintain his/her building - Create a fast-track eviction process for tenants who vandalize their units or buildings or cause serious problems when the apartment is in a small complex where the landlord also lives - Continue to exempt rental units built since 1991 from rent controls, and allow new tenants and landlords to negotiate starting rents in private rental units. The Landlord and Tenant Board The Tribunal's name will be changed to the Landlord and Tenant Board to reflect its renewed mandate of enhanced customer service and accessibility for tenants and landlords. Service fee reductions include: - Photocopying fees will be cut in half from $1 to 50cents per page - Fees for audio recordings of hearings reduced from $25 to $15 - Fees for application for above guideline rent increases will be reduced from $500 for the first unit plus $5 for each additional unit to a maximum of $1,000 to $200 for the first 10 units and $10 for each additional unit to a maximum of $1,000. Improving the availability, affordability and quality of housing The Residential Tenancies Act, 2006 is just one way the McGuinty government is addressing the housing needs of Ontario families. Other ways that the government is improving the availability, affordability and quality of housing in Ontario with a particular focus on helping vulnerable groups, such as low-income tenants, include: - Canada-Ontario Affordable Housing Program will fund up to 15,000 units of affordable housing and provide housing allowances for some 5,000 lower-income families in Ontario. The program provides units for vulnerable Ontarians such as victims of domestic violence, persons with mental illness, families on social assistance and the working poor. To date, more than 6,500 units have been built, are under construction, or in the planning approval stage. - Ontario Rent Bank Program promotes housing stability by helping low-income tenants avoid eviction for non-payment of rent due to an unforeseen crisis. Since 2004, approximately 6,000 Ontario households have received assistance for short-term rent arrears. - Ontario Strong Communities Rent Supplement Program assists low- income households to obtain housing. To date, 6,670 low-income households have received rent supplements. Disponible en français www.mah.gov.on.ca For further information: Patti Munce, Minister's Office, (416) 585-6333; Sonya Rolfe, Market Housing Branch, (416) 585-7398 HELP | CONTACT US | PRIVACY | IMPORTANT NOTICES © Queen's Printer for Ontario, 2008-2009 — Last Modified: February 15, 2009 For further information: Patti Munce, Minister's Office, (416) 585-6333; Sonya Rolfe, Market Housing Branch, (416) 585-7398